Kadazans

The Kadazans are an ethnic group living and representing the state of Sabah in Malaysia. Due to similarities in culture and language with the Dusun another ethnic group in term of culture and politic issue, they unified themselves and thus a new name emerged called “Kadazan-dusun” which known locally.

Kadazan everyday life is heavily influenced by the farming of rice, culminating in various delicacies and alcoholic drinks prepared through differing home-brewed fermentation processes. Two well known rice wine is being served by family is Tapai and lihing are the main rice wine variants served and consumed in Kadazan populated areas, and are a staple of Kadazan social gatherings and ceremonies.

The most important festival of the Kadazans is the Kaamatan or harvest festival, where the spirit of the paddy is honored after a year’s harvest. This takes place in May, and the two last days of the month are public holidays throughout Sabah. At same the time, the most celebrated event is the crowning of the ‘unduk ngadau’ or harvest queen, where native Kadazandusuns girls throughout the state compete for the coveted crown. The beauty pageant is held to commemorate the spirit of ‘Huminodon’, a mythological character of unparalleled beauty said to have given her life in exchange for a bountiful harvest for her community.

Interesting fact that Kadazans have a particularly good relation with the local Chinese and this has resulted in the coinage of the term Sino-Kadazan, which is a phrase used to describe the half Kadazan, half Chinese offspring of such unions.



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